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Demand for drivers has doubled, incentives now key - GlobalData

Demand for drivers, including motor vehicle operators, ambulance drivers and attendants, truck drivers, and passenger vehicle drivers, has surged in the last year, according to the jobs analytics database by GlobalData, with job advertisements for these positions more than doubling from 16,417 in August 2020 to 34,515 in August 2021.

GlobalData notes that simply advertising for drivers is not enough and incentives, such as sign-on bonuses and high wages, are needed to fill positions. A high number of retirements in recent times and tough working conditions have prompted companies to go the extra mile.

Ajay Thalluri, business fundamentals analyst at GlobalData, says, “Drivers are in demand now more than ever. Simply advertising for a driver is not enough, and many companies have decided to tackle the shortage by providing sign-on bonuses of up to $15,000, as well as paying salaries of up to $144,000 annually.”

Demand for drivers has doubled, incentives now key - GlobalData

Looking at the recently advertised jobs, Thalluri highlights some of the most noteworthy examples of various incentives:

  • FedEx listed its highest number of jobs so far, at over 9,600 in August 2021, while United Parcel Service listed around 9,000.
  • Ryder System is offering employees thousands of dollars off new purchases of BMW, Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, Fiat, and GM car models. It is also facilitating discounts on electronics and jewellery.
  • Penske Corporation is offering a salary of $94,000 to $144,000 for top Class A CDL drivers.
  • Core-Mark Holding Company is providing a $15,000 sign-on bonus for Class A drivers.

Thalluri continues: “While lucrative benefits have become common to attract drivers, companies are also reviewing their hiring strategies. For example, Challenger Motor Freight listed a role for ‘director of driver recruiting’ in August 2021 to implement innovative recruitment and retention strategies.

“Similarly, XPO Logistics is developing plans to build truck and driver capacity, as well as a recruitment programme to meet driver growth targets. Meanwhile, Anderson Trucking Service listed a role for a ‘vice president of driver recruiting’ to research and explore emerging technology and legislation that may impact or expand the company’s ability to recruit drivers.”

DoorDash, which relies on gig workers, is hiring to expand in new geographies. Its listing for a ‘director, driver conversion and international operations’ role will boost drivers and hit lofty fleet growth targets in Australia, Canada, Japan, and future launch markets.

Thalluri concludes: “The hiring trend for drivers is expected to be strong in Q4 2021, driven by companies increasing their focus on direct-to-consumer (DTC) product and service delivery strategies and holiday shopping.”

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